Slough CVS has been organising initiatives to help connect clients with low to moderate levels of depression, anxiety, stress, isolation, and loneliness, to focus their energy on a positive activity. The Thriving Communities Supporting Well Being through Creativity offers a range of activities from community link groups covering health, exercise, arts, music dance, chats, environmental understanding, happiness get-togethers and more.
Activities include arts and crafts sessions, Connect Programmes: Exploring identity and self-expression in a creative way, and cultural and social community activities, such as singing sessions. This will help overcome barriers to mental wellbeing, by enabling clients to focus their energy on creative and positive activities.
Slough CVS is providing support, enabling clients to build their confidence to access more face-to-face activities. Social prescribers based at GP practices across Slough are able to refer patients to activities and residents can also self-refer.
Elizabeth Howell says:
“I am an ex-carer, who cared for my husband for many years. During the lockdown, I found my levels of physical inactivity increased and I became socially isolated so joining Isabel Hunt’s art classes has been really beneficial to my mind and wellbeing.
Every session is different, with new interesting topics to draw. I do believe that the arts have an important role to play in times like this – through offering help, promoting wellbeing and creating a space for social connection.
I have attended 2 sessions so far and it really engages my brain. I love it and would recommend them to anyone and I have made a few friends too which is always great to beat loneliness!”
Another participant says:
“Music is so important and enables me to interact when I can’t communicate in other ways, as I have a language barrier but more so my husband whom I care for has Dementia and having a meaningful conversation can be very hard at times. This activity makes me feel normal and it makes me feel that I am able to communicate, be happy and talk to others outside my home, rather than keeping quiet and feeling alone. Sometimes Saida will play a piece of music that will get me up dancing, other times it might make me cry, but this is so healthy for me and my wellbeing. I enjoy it so much!”